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Sunday, June 27, 2004

From the Modest Proposal department:

This gentleman from the CIA who recently wrote the book Imperial Hubris has raised some excellent questions about the wisdom of President George W. Bush and his advisors, or lack of it, in invading Iraq. However, his advice to Bush about what to do next is not necessarily the best for our country and our sons and daughters now fighting in Iraq.

"Anonymous" has been making the rounds all over US political talk shows and news programs. While ABC News has yet to post the transcript of their conversation, MSNBC has seen fit to do so with Andrea Mitchell's interview with him. What follows is a quote from that interview.

Mitchell: "You call for some very tough actions here. You talk about escalating our war against them, and you say in your book that killing in large numbers is not enough to defeat our Muslim foes. This killing must be a Sherman-like razing of infrastructure. You talk about civilian deaths. You talk about landmines. Is that really what we have come to in this war on terror?"

Anonymous: "I think we've come to the place where the military is about our only option. We have not really discussed the idea of why we're at war with what I think is an increasing number of Muslims. Which — it's very hard in this country to debate policy regarding Israel or to debate actions or policies that might result in more expensive energy. I don't think it's something that we wanted to do, but I think it's where we've arrived. We've arrived at the point where the only option is military. And quite frankly, in Iraq and in Afghanistan we've applied that military force with a certain daintiness that has not served our interests well."

Well, let me submit that even the actions "Anonymous" is advocating is even "too dainty," to use his turn of phrase. Here is a plan that will deal with our problem once and for all.


That's right...evacuate our sons and daughters from the entire region, evacuate our allies from the region, pack up, leave, then just aim all those missiles that we built to take out the Soviet Union at the entire region. Start at Gibraltar and don't stop until we finish off Kashmir. Lob a few at Indonesia while we're at it. Just carpet-bomb the whole region with America's best WMDs until it is a single smoking glob of atomic glass.

What, you say? What about Israel? Bah. A Jewish State could have been constituted in either the British or American zones of Germany, or, if the Jewish People wanted a more Mediterranean clime, occupied Italy. Why the sam-hell did they have to chose British Palestine? They could have had their ultimate revenge against the architects of the Holocaust, or revenge against those who shipped boxcar-loads of Italian Jewry to death in Nazi Concentration Camps. Instead, they chose a godforsaken strip of Mediterranean scrubland. The Mojave Desert would have been more promising land for such a state. Too bad they didn't have the foresight to choose the right place to relocate from the Diaspora. Collateral damage. Sorry, thanks for playing.

And of course, there's all that disturbing speculation about the results of such a nuclear strike on such a large swath of the planet's surface. Nuclear winter? Climate change? Whole areas of the world rendered nuclear no-go zones? Bosh. Collateral damage, can't be helped, mustn't be too dainty.

No, if we are to come to an endgame with the terrorists, if we are to truly win the War on Terror, we must take bold steps. We must dare to be great. The Romans had a Carthaginian problem. The Israelites had a Canaanite problem. They did not have the awesome power we have at our disposal. They both took massive casualties as they prosecuted the eventual destruction of Carthage and Jericho. We don't have to. A few missiles retargeted, a few passwords entered, a few buttons pushed. That's all. Our Final Solution to the Osama bin Laden problem is at hand, if we are bold enough to use it.

Call it Operation Modest Proposal. The name has a good ring.